http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/20429caa-6a49-11e2-a3db-00144feab49a.html?ftcamp=published_links%2Frss%2Fworld_us%2Ffeed%2F%2Fproduct#axzz2JZfiG7tD* AGAIN... THANK GOD FOR THE FOREIGN PRESS... (*SIGH*)The finances of the U.S.’s multi-employer pension schemes have deteriorated so quickly over the past year that the body that insures them will almost certainly run out of cash in 20 years, according to a new report.The chances of the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation – the publicly created but privately funded body that insures the nation’s occupational pension schemes – going bust went from 1 in 3 at the end of 2011 to more than 9 in 10 by the end of 2012, a report prepared for the PBGC and released on Tuesday said.(*CLAP...CLAP...CLAP*)* FOLKS... WHAT CAN I TELL YA? The woes of the PBGC are common to pension schemes...* Hmm... ARE THEY SIMPLY MISSPELLING "SCAMS...???"...and their insurers in industrialized economies where defined benefit pension schemes form a significant portion of retirement benefit. Weak returns on assets after the 2008 financial crisis meant schemes did not earn as much as they expected, while low bond yields gave rise to much larger calculations of deficits.* THUS... "SCAMS" SEEMS TO ME TO BE THE PROPER TERM... (*SHRUG*)However, the PBGC noted that the deterioration in the funding status for pension schemes financed by groups of employers was down to a range of factors, one of which was limits on the insurer’s ability to force employers to pay their fair share of premiums.In explaining the reasons for the snowballing deficit, the PBGC said: “The situation is made worse by withdrawing employers that often do not pay their full obligations. Although plans can and do assess withdrawal liability, the law limits the annual amounts that an employer must pay and caps the number of annual payments at 20 years; in cases of bankruptcy, the outstanding withdrawal liability is often unpaid.”* THUS... "SCAMS."PBGC’s director, Josh Gotbaum, has warned that its inability to set premiums on employers that take account of the risk each presents is preventing it from stabilizing its finances. It has asked Congress to be allowed to set premiums in the same way as bodies that insure deposits at the nation’s banks.* FOLKS... DON'T YOU SEE...??? ALL THEY'RE ACTUALLY SUGGESTING IS DOUBLING DOWN ON AN IRRATION SCAM! IT'S THE WHOLE "DEFINED PENSION" SCAM THAT'S THE PROBLEM! IT'S HOLDING EMPLOYERS RESPONSIBLE FOR FORMER EMPLOYERS THAT'S THE PROBLEM! IT'S PROMISING TO PAY SOMEONE 20 YEARS DOWN THE ROAD... 30 YEARS DOWN THE ROAD... 40 YEARS DOWN THE ROAD... MONEY THAT NO ONE CAN BE CERTAIN WILL BE THEIR 20-30-40 YEARS DOWN THE ROAD!In November, the PBGC reported a record shortfall – the gap between available assets and projected liabilities – of $34 billion.(*SMIRK*)The PBGC said its calculations of the net deficit did not take into account either future premiums or insolvencies that were not certain enough to be recorded as liabilities.(*ROLLING MY EYES*)
http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/30/us-markets-forex-idUSBRE9070IW20130130http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/01/30/us-markets-forex-idUSBRE9070IW20130130The euro held near a 14-month peak against the dollar and a two and a half year high versus the yen on Thursday, having risen solidly as investors expect central banks in both the United States and Japan to keep an aggressive easing stance.(*CLAP...CLAP...CLAP*)The U.S. Federal Reserve underscored that view by leaving in place its monthly $85 billion bond-buying stimulus plan on Wednesday, arguing the support was needed to lower unemployment.(*JUST SHAKING MY HEAD*)* IF THE CHINESE OR THE RUSSIANS OR THE ARABS OR AL-QIADA WERE SCHEMING TO DESTROY THE VALUE OF OUR DOLLAR WE'D VIEW IT AS AN ACT OF WAR...(*SIGH*)* YET OBAMA/BERNANKE/DEMPUBLICANS/REPUBLICRATS SCHEME TO DESTROY OUR DOLLAR... AND IT'S BUSINESS AS USUAL - EVEN LAUDATORY TO MANY!
http://www.jsonline.com/watchdog/watchdogreports/atfs-milwaukee-sting-operation-marred-by-mistakes-failures-mu8akpj-188952581.html?abc=Ct5vpWpSDavid Salkin unknowingly rented his building at 1220 E. Meinecke Avenue (Milwaukie, WI.) to the ATF, which ran an undercover sting. Burglars broke into the business, ending the operation. Salkin says the ATF owes him $15,000 for damage and unpaid utility bills. The agency has refused to pay.(*JUST THROWING MY HANDS UP*)* FOLKS... I WANT YOU TO READ THIS ONE FROM BEGINNING TO END; SEE YOUR OBAMA-LED GOVERNMENT IN ACTION. (ERIC HOLDER AND "BIG SIS" MAKE THE CLINTON AND BUSH GANGS LOOK COMPETENT!)
http://washington.cbslocal.com/2013/01/31/menendez-i-reimbursed-donor-nearly-60g-for-dominican-republic-trips/Sen. Robert Menendez’s office says he reimbursed a prominent Florida political donor $58,500 in recent months for the full cost of two of three trips Menendez took on the donor’s plane to the Dominican Republic in 2010.(*SMIRK*)* SO... AFTER HE GETS CAUGHT... (*PAUSE*)(*GUFFAW*)The Daily Caller, a conservative website, reported shortly before the November election that Menendez traveled on Melgen’s private plane to the Dominican Republic to engage in sex with prostitutes. Some New Jersey Republicans filed a complaint with the Senate Ethics Committee last fall in the wake of the allegations by The Daily Caller. (*PURSED LIPS*)In response, Menendez’s staffers searched records for trips by the senator to the Dominican Republic and found the two additional trips that hadn’t been reimbursed.* SO... MENENDEZ SIMPLY... er... "FORGOT"... THAT HIS RICH DONOR PAL (WHO LIVES IN FLORIDA AND THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC AND DONATES TO A NJ SENATE CAMPAIGN... er... WHY...???) FLEW HIM TO "RANGELVILLE" TO ENGAGE IN CHILD SEX...??? (OOPS... SORRY... "ALLEGED" CHILD SEX...)On Tuesday, Menendez became chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, succeeding Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.(*CLAP...CLAP...CLAP*)* AND THIS AIN'T A SICK COUNTRY UNDER BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA...???Records filed in Palm Beach County show an Internal Revenue Service lien against Melgen of more than $11.1 million for unpaid taxes from 2006-09. Prior liens for taxes from 1998 to 2002 were subsequently withdrawn, records show.* AND THIS IS SENATOR MENENDEZ'S GOOD FRIEND AND MAJOR DONOR, HUH...(*SHRUG*)Earlier Wednesday, Menendez’s office said Melgen has been a friend and political supporter of the senator for many years and said the three trips Menendez took have been “paid for and reported appropriately.” (Menendez’s office later changed the statement’s wording to specify that the trips had been “paid for or reported appropriately” to correct the impression that all three trips had been publicly reported.)* "LATER CHANGED..." (*SMIRK*)Melgen, a registered Democrat, has made $193,350 in political contributions since 1998, including $14,200 to Menendez, according to Federal Election Commission records. Menendez was chairman of the Senate Democratic Campaign Committee, which raises money for Democratic Senate candidates, from 2009-11.* AND YET... HE OWES OVER $11 MILLION IN UNPAID TAXES...???(*GUFFAW*)* NO... SERIOUSLY, FOLKS... IT AIN'T FUNNY. IT'S SICK. * AGAIN... THIS SCUMBAG MENENDEZ HAS JUST BEEN "PROMOTED" TO THE CHAIRMAN SHIP OF THIS NATION'S SENATE FOREIGN RELATIONS COMMITTEE...!!! PROMOTED BY HARRY REID!)* FOLKS... WHAT'S HAPPENING TO THIS COUNTRY... IT'S LITERALLY A CRYING SHAME.
http://www.steynonline.com/5376/who-are-we[C]ulture trumps politics...[L]ook no further than the very first post-election issue Republicans were told they needed to address: getting on the right side of Hispanics by neutralizing the illegal-immigrant issue. A population perhaps the size of Australia's or four mid-sized EU nations' strolled into America and decided to stay. In doing so, they broke the law. Literally. That's to say, some of the most basic laws of the nation lie shattered and discarded. Municipally, we have "sanctuary cities." At the state level, Illinois is merely the latest to consider issuing driver's licenses and other legal ID to persons who are in the country illegally.Federally, the president himself has decreed by executive order that the laws of the nation not be enforced — and, indeed, anybody minded to try enforcing them (Arizona) gets hauled into court.* MARK STEYN IS THE AUTHOR OF THIS ARTICLE. HE'S JUST OUTLINED EXAMPLES OF THE LITERAL COLLAPSE OF THE RULE OF LAW.This is a highly legalistic society with laws against everything and most of them with stiff jail sentences attached. Yet a group of squatters has rendered the law irrelevant. Four of the September 11 terrorists obtained the picture ID they used to board the plane through the illegal-immigrant day-worker network in the parking lot of the 7-Eleven in Falls Church, Va. But 3,000 corpses wasn't enough to persuade either the citizenry or their representatives to end their indulgence of such networks; indeed, it's estimated that half of the "undocumented" have come here since 9/11.The culture frames the issue, starting with the appropriation of language: These are "hard-working families" willing to do "the jobs Americans won't do," notwithstanding the strains they place on hospitals and schools, the contributions they make to gang crime and drunk-driving statistics . . . Once upon a time they were "illegal," then "undocumented," now just "immigrants," a word with longstanding emotional resonance in America but nevertheless one that used to mean guys who stood in line at consulates, filled in the paperwork, and paid the application fees, and whose redefinition into something entirely different has been accepted as a fait accompli.(*PURSED LIPS*)I was at Starbucks the other day and saw that Tony Bennett has another celebrity-duets album out. He releases them every 20 minutes: You can count on the fingers of one hand the guys he hasn't sloughed off a duet with (Donald Rumsfeld, Herman van Rompuy, and Earl's brother who lives off of Route 23 past the grain elevator and doesn't come into town too much). But his latest duets set is an album with Latino superstars. He doesn't speak the lingo, so he does his usual Anglo shtick, and then they warble back at him in Spanish and he chuckles occasionally as if he has a clue what they're singing. But it's his management's way of cutting Tony in on a little of the action Latin-wise. That's all the GOP are trying to figure out how to do: Like Tony Bennett, their fellow old white male, they'd like to reposition themselves to be where it's at. Or at least on the general outskirts of where it's at. On this issue, as the current panic demonstrates, politicians are the least of it: They're playing catch-up.* ABSOLUTELY. DON'T TRUST THE GOP ESTABLISHMENT. PERIOD.Culture trumps politics. Culture trumps economics. On November 6, culture trumped reality — and delivered, as a Democrat in my state tweeted, "a binderful of awesome!" Binders? "The Life of Julia"? Lena Dunham? We ought to be asking why something so obviously risible was not obviously so to millions of voters.Because the Left understands where the real victories are won: Politics is a battle, but culture is the war.
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